Old Hat

by Emily Gravett (Author) Emily Gravett (Illustrator)

Old Hat
Reading Level: K − 1st Grade
From the creator of Wolves, Dogs, Tidy, and the Bear and Hare series and twice-winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal, Emily Gravett comes a fresh, funny, and punchy picture book about the futility of fads and the joy of learning to be yourself. Harbet had a hat. His Nana had knitted it for him when he was little. Harbet likes his comfy knitted hat, but the others keep jeering at him--OLD HAT! OLD HAT! No matter what headwear he buys--be it a towering fruit platter hat, an old-boot-on-the-head hat, or a brightly lit traffic cone hat, Harbet cannot keep up with the latest fashions. As soon as he gets a brand new hat it is already...OLD HAT! It seems that Harbet will never fit in. But when one day he decides to go his own way, Harbet discovers just how much more fun it is to stop following others and think for yourself.

School Library Journal

POPPreS-Gr 2--A sweet and simple book with a strong message about being yourself. Harbet the dog has a favorite hat that his Nana knitted for him. It is a perfect fit and keeps him cozy in the cold weather. Unfortunately, the rest of the Harbet's friends find his cap to be passe and make it well known that it is an old one. So, the pup sets out to find the perfect new hat. Many of them make him happy with their outlandish style and special features. But none of them seem to please his friends, who move on to the next trend at lightning speed. Finally, while sitting on a humongous pile of discarded new hats, Harbet decides to ditch headgear all together and go out into the world as his fabulous self (keeping his original old hat for the winter months, of course)! His friends try, but they cannot outshine Harbet as his true self. VERDICT With its vibrant watercolor illustrations and witty storytelling style, this book is sure to please a wide variety of children. Its message of self love makes it a must-buy for any library collection.--Jasmine L. Precopio, Fox Chapel Area School District, Pittsburgh

Copyright 2018 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Publishers Weekly

Harbet is a shaggy dog who ventures out in the ear-flapped knitted cap his Nana has made for him. He meets a dinosaur, a big-billed bird, and a bear, all ostentatiously decked out in Carmen Miranda-style fruit-bowl hats. Oblivious to their own silly headwear, they laugh at Harbet's. "Old hat!" they chorus. Trying hard to keep up, Harbet picks out a fruit creation just like theirs ("It was low in fat, high in fiber, and could provide 80% of his daily vitamins"), but they've already moved on to hats shaped like traffic cones, and their derisive "Ha Ha's" fill up the big spreads. After the search for up-to-the-minute headgear ends in despair, the dog does something brave: "Harbet took off his hat." He's got a wonderful secret, and now the three friends are filled with envy. Readers can giggle at Gravett's sly prose and witty caricatures, but there's a lot to talk about, too. The three friends don't look mean; are they bullies? Is Harbet silly to worry, or is his anxiety easy to understand? There's more to this smart story than funny hats. Ages 4-8. (Feb.)

Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.
Emily Gravett
Emily Gravett is the two-time winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal with Wolves and Little Mouse's Big Book of Fears. Her internationally award-winning picture books include Meerkat Mail, Tidy and Old Hat. She has illustrated bestselling fiction, including Matt Haig's Evie and the Animals and and a recent full-colour edition of Quidditch Through the Ages.

Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Publication date
February 20, 2018

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